Dear Dad, by Randy Inman

Dear Dad.

Sometimes if feels like one hundred years since you died; other times, it’s like it was yesterday. As I grow older–and I hope wiser–it dawns on me anew what a terrible shame it was for you to pass when you did at a fairly young age. You worked hard your whole life to get a nice place for you and mama. Then shortly after doing that, you got sick.

As I watch my kids grow, I regret our relationship wasn’t as close as it could have been. No, we were not the type to speak of feelings to each other, but we knew it was there.

I wish you could know how sorry I am that the one time I can remember you saying “I love you” to me as an adult, I pretended to not hear and ask you to repeat it. You just replied “Nothing” and I left the room very quickly. It was after you were sick, and it scared me to hear you say that. I knew then that you were not going to beat cancer and that you would die.

Even though I was an adult, it was hard to picture you as just another man. You were my dad and close to indestructible in my eyes. When it finally sunk in you were going to die, I didn’t know what to say or do.

When the nurses said you were in a coma, you kept trying to talk. At first we didn’t understand what you were saying over and over.  When it dawned on us you were trying to say mama’s name over and over again, it sent me to my knees at the wonder of that love.

I know what love like that is now. You would like Ann. She isn’t a frilly, girly type and even works on the car, as you know I am helpless in that department. At the same time, she is a lady. You would like her. I know mama sure does.

Adam is almost 13 now and entering the terrible teens, but he is a good kid most of the time. He wants to work on cars when he gets older. Wonder who he got that from? I think he remembers you a little, and he has your picture by his bed.

You would like Ann’s kids. They are a good bunch. Shawn is very smart and the hardest working teenager I ever knew. Chris has had his troubles but seems to be growing out of them. Bribe him with a fishing trip and he is a friend for life. Monica is adorable and quick with an insult in a teasing way. You would love her often only answering to her nickname “George” and her affection for me.

I hope somehow you are able to see us and how we are doing and know that I miss you very much and always will.

Your son,


Randy Inman is a freelance writer living in the foothills of North Carolina. He enjoys watching sports, fishing and spending time with his fiancee and kids. You can read his writing here and here, so stop by and leave him a comment or two. If you’re into sports, Randy’s column here is a must read.

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8 Responses to “Dear Dad, by Randy Inman”

  1. I’m so heartbroken for you, Randy! The part about “I love you” teared me up. It sounds like you had a wonderful father who would be so proud of you and your family if he were still alive. I’m sure he knows how much you love and miss him.

  2. Angel says:

    Me too, Lindsay!

    Randy, I feel your pain. I miss my dad so much and hate that he’s not with us any longer. I am glad Ian got to know him for as long as he did though, because he will be able to remember.

  3. Amy says:

    I felt the love here Randy, and please know that your dad knows too. Watch for the signs and you will see them..

  4. Randy Inman says:

    Thanks for the comments everyone.

  5. Kim says:

    This is a beautiful letter to your dad. I’m sure he heard it.

  6. Clarissa says:

    What a beautiful letter to your dad, Randy. I am sorry he is gone. Even though my dad and I aren’t close, I can’t imagine the day he dies because him and my mom are immortal in my eyes.

  7. Ann says:

    Randy great letter hun. I see how he gets when his dads birthday and other days goes around and how much he regrets not saying I love you back. Randy is a great man and dad to his son and to my kids who my daughter acts just like him. They get more and more alike as time goes by. I love you hun and hope to see you write more.

  8. Jim says:


    That’s a very touching letter.


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